No, Kelly Brogan, germs are not “trying to kill us.” And yes, they are real.

I’m honestly not even sure where to start with this.                This claim comes from Kelly Brogan, “holistic psychiatrist” and noted HIV denier. She claims, “Goodbye to germ theory! Can we really maintain the childish illusion that there are a handful of identified ‘bad germs’ out there trying to […]

HIV denial: alive and well in 2014 [UPDATED]

Everything old is new again. For years on this blog, I wrote about HIV denial and the few fringe scientists and journalists who espoused it. I attracted a host of trolls, some of whom repeatedly attacked my credibility, my appearance, even showed up at my academic office. One of the most prolific of these was […]

Twitter-splained

Just wrapped up a meeting sponsored by the Center for Disease Dynamics, Economics, and Policy and Princeton University’s Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology and Environmental Institute on the topic of antibiotic resistance at the animal-human interface. While I was there, I hopped on Twitter at a break after mingling and pumping–and got my ass […]

Castrating sheep with teeth: not a good idea (with video!)

Just a quick post as I’m in end-of-semester hell. Via Maryn McKenna on Twitter, the CDC has released a report of Campylobacter illnesses due to not food consumption, but because of castrating lambs. With their teeth. On June 29, 2011, the Wyoming Department of Health was notified of two laboratory-confirmed cases of Campylobacter jejuni enteritis […]

Does bestiality increase your risk of penile cancer?

Aah, the things one learns when awake at 3AM on a Saturday night. Via a few different Tweeps, I ran across this article from Men’s Health magazine, titled “Urgent Warning: Sex with Animals Causes Cancer.” I probably should have just stopped there. But no, I read the magazine article, which states: Brazilian researchers polled nearly […]

Chickenpox parties–just a Facebook friend away

I’ve written a few times about chickenpox parties. The first link refers to a magazine article describing the practice; the second, a few years later, about a Craigslist ad looking to hold such a party “at McDonald [sic] or some place with toys to play on.” Clearly, as chickenpox cases have become more rare in […]

You’re also too pretty for math

I wasn’t going to raise this comment en blogge, but with Dr. Isis’ new post, it becomes more relevant. From Rick Fletcher on the “you’re too pretty” post: It’s a major issue if your department won’t hire your or promote you because you are a woman. It’s no surprise that a retail clerk at a […]

Additional thoughts on Bible-flu and the retraction

PZ has some additional thoughts on the Bibleflugate retraction up at Pharyngula. Choice quote: This is a serious concern, to my mind. Scientists are expected to be open and communicative about their work, explaining all the details about how we achieve our results. Yet then we hand that work over to a publisher (usually a […]

Biblical flu paper going bye-bye

Well, that was quick. Yesterday’s post highlighting a really terrible paper in BMC’s Virology Journal drew a lot of comments here and at Pharyngula, and attention at the journal (where it currently stands as the 5th most-accessed article in the last 30 days). The journal’s Editor-in-Chief, Dr. Robert F. Garry, this in the comments section […]

Biblical fever = influenza. You’re kidding me, right?

Via Bob O’H and Cath Ennis comes this truly bizarre article from the Virology Journal: “Influenza or not influenza: Analysis of a case of high fever that happened 2000 years ago in Biblical time”. Now, regular readers will know that I normally love this type of thing; digging back through history to look at Lincoln’s […]